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The Integrated Knowledge Centre (IKC) Commercialisation Laboratory

Aims & objectives

The CIKC is a large EPSRC-funded programme of research aimed to the exploratory development and commercialisation of research conducted in the area of photonics and advanced electronics by groups at the University of Cambridge’s Departments of Physics and Electrical Engineering jointly with industrial partners and teams at Cambridge Judge Business School, the Institute for Manufacturing and the CBR.

Within the CIKC programme the objectives of the CBR Commercialisation Laboratory are:

  1. To investigte the innovation dynamics of the CIKC technical projects
  2. To facilitate commercialisation processes of CIKC technologies
  3. To compare relevant international policy frameworks for the commercialisation of technologies emerging at public-private interfaces

Facilitation of CIKC commercialisation activities led to a number of initiatives for exploitation of the innovative potential of CIKC technical projects, which have generated a considerable amount of original IP and two spin-off companies. The comparative policy work, based on site visits to Germany, Belgium, Taiwan, South Korea, Japan and the USA, led to the manuscript Models of Technology Development in Intermediate Research Organisations (by Andrea Mina, David Connell and Alan Hughes). This paper identified and discussed the characteristics, operating mechanisms and strategic positions of important innovation intermediaries working at the public-private interface. The findings of the project fed directly into the Hauser Report on The Current and Future Role of Technology and Innovation Centres in the UK, presented to Lord Mandelson on 25 April 2010. It also informed a Submission of evidence to HM Treasury and BIS consultation document “Financing a Private Sector Recovery”, December 2010, by the CBR team. The longitudinal study of the CIKC university-industry innovation processes in progress, will capture the lessons gained through the continuous observation over a period of four years of the CIKC project’s commercialisation. It will relate the innovation pathways to resources, barriers and constraints, opportunities, behaviours and expectations.

Working papers

Mina, A., Connell, D. and Hughes, A. (2009), ‘Models of Technology Development in Intermediate Research Organisations’, CBR Working Paper No. 396, Centre for Business Research, University of Cambridge, Cambridge.

Hughes, A. (2007), ‘Innovation policy as cargo cult: Myth and reality in knowledge-led productivity growth’, CBR Working Paper No. 348, Centre for Business Research, University of Cambridge, Cambridge.

Mina, A. (2008), The Emergence of New Knowledge, Market Evolution and the Dynamics of Micro Innovation Systems, Danish Research Unit for Industrial Dynamics (DRUID) Working Paper.

Journal articles

Dodgson, M., Foster, J., Hughes, A. and Metcalfe, J.S. (2011), ‘Systems thinking, market failure, and the development of innovation policy: The case of Australia’, Research Policy, (

Cosh, A., Fu, X. and Hughes, A. (2010), ‘Organisation structure and innovation performance in different environments’, Small Business Economics, published online 6 November. (

Hughes, A. (2010), ‘Entrepreneurship and innovation policy: retrospect and prospect’, Political Quarterly, 79:133-152.

Cosh, A.D. and Hughes, A. (2009) ‘Never mind the quality feel the width: University – industry links and government financial support for innovation in small high-technology businesses in the UK and the USA’ Journal of Technology Transfer Special Edition, Springer, March.

Hughes, A. (2009) ‘On Universities and Innovation Policy: Some reflections based on US and UK Experience’ Papers and Proceedings of the Manchester Statistical Society, Manchester Statistical Society. Hughes, A. (2006), ‘Optimal Innovation Systems: Lessons from the UK and the USA’, in Innovation: management, policy & practice, Vol. 8, Issue 4-5: pp 369-377, December.

Hughes, A. (2007), ‘A misappliance of science’, Parliamentary House Magazine, July.

Mina A. (2009) ‘The Emergence of New Knowledge, Market Evolution and the Dynamics of Micro-Innovation Systems’ The Economics of Innovation and New Technologies, 18(5): 447-466.

Book chapters

Hughes, A., Moore, B. and Ulrichsen, T. (2011), ‘Evaluating innovation policies: a case study of the impact of Third Stream funding in the English higher education sector’, in M. Colombo, L. Grilli, L. Pisutello and C. Rossi Lamastra (eds). Science and Innnovation Policy for the New Knowledge Economy (Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing.

Hughes, A. (2010), ‘Entrepreneurship and innovation policy: retrospect and prospect’, in V. Uberoi, , A. Coutts, A. McLean and D. Halpern (eds) (2010), Options for Britain II: Cross Cutting Policy Issues – Changes and Challenges (Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell).

Mina, A. (2009), ‘The Micro-Dynamics of Innovation System Emergence’, in Antonelli, C. (ed) The System Dynamics of Technological Change, Edward Elgar: Cheltenham.

Hughes, A. (2008), ‘Innovation policy as cargo cult: Myth and reality in knowledge-led productivity growth’, in Bessant, J. and Venables, T. (eds), Creating Wealth from Knowledge. meeting the Innovation Challenge, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham. Reprinted in Augusto Lopez-Claros (ed.) (2009), The Innovation for Development Report 2009-2010: Strengthening Innovation for the Prosperity of Nations, Palgrave Macmillan.


Hughes, A. and Martin, B.M. (2012) Enhancing Impact: The Value of Public Sector R&D, UK~IRC and CIHE, Report.

Connell, D. and Probert, J. (2010), Exploding the Myths of UK Innovation Policy: How ‘Soft Companies’ and R&D Contracts for Customers Drive the Growth of the Hi-Tech Economy, Research Commissioned on Behalf of the East of England Science and Industry Council by the East of England Development Agency. CBR, University of Cambridge.

Connell, D (2010) ‘Connell, D. (2010) ‘Scientists are Customers too: How the SBRI can Help Research Councils drive Economic Growth’, NESTA Provocation, May 2010.

Working papers

Mina, A. (2010) ‘Knowledge and the evolving Economy’ working paper, in progress; CBR WP 412, September.

Wennberg, K., Lee, C., Tether, B. and Mina, A. (2010) ‘Turning digital: diversification in UK design consultancy services’ Imperial College London (Business School) Working Paper, March 2010; CBR WP 413, September.

Costa-i-Font, J., Courbabe, C. and Mina, A. (2009) ‘Innovation and health: pathways to new technologies’ Economics of Innovation and New Technology 18(5): 403-406.

Consoli, D., McMeeking, A., Metcalfe, J.S., Mina, A., and Ramlogan, R. (2009) ‘The process of healthcare innovation: problem sequences, systems and symbiosis’ in J. Costa-i-Font, C. Courbage and A. McGuire (eds.) The Economics of New Health Technologies: Incentives, Organisation and Financing (Oxford and New York: OUP).

Hughes, A. and Mina, A. (2010) ‘The Impact of the Patent System on SMEs’, CBR WP 411, September.

Mina, A. (2009) ‘Risk capital and innovation: corporate venture capital’ FINNOV Working paper 3.1b.

Mina, A., Connell, D. and Hughes, A. (2009) ‘Models of technology development in intermediate research organisations’ CBR WP No. 396, December 2009.


Connell, D, (2012) submitted two tranches of written evidence to the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee Inquiry on Bridging the “Valley of Death”: Improving the Commercialisation of Research, and gave oral evidence to the committee on 18th April.

Connell, D., Hughes, A. and Mina, A. (2010), Submission to House of Commons Committee on Science and Technology Enquiry on Technology Innovation Centres, December.

Connell, D. (2010), Submission to House of Lords Select Committee on Science and Technology Enquiry into Procurement as a Tool to Stimulate Innovation, December.

Connell, D. (2010), Oral Evidence to the House of Lords and House of Commons Select Committees on Science and Technology in response to their Enquiry on the use of procurement to stimulate innovation, 21 December.

Conference presentations

Connell, D. (2012) ‘The US Innovation System at a meeting of the Centre for Business Innovation’s Open Innovation Practitioners’ Consortium involving representatives from major European companies which took place in Berlin in July.

Hughes, A. (2012) ‘Measuring the Impact of UK Publicly Funded Research: Challenges and Opportunities’, Presentation at the CaSE Workshop on Spending Review 2013, Cancer Research UK, London, 25 May.

Hughes, A. and Martin, B. (2012) ‘The Impact of UK Public Sector Research’, Presentation at BIS, London, 11 May.

Connell, D. (2012) was asked to speak at seminars organised by the European Parliament in Brussels in February and April 2012 and at the European Science Open Forum in Dublin in July.

Hughes, A. (2011) ‘Universities in Innovation Systems’, Presentation at the IIM-B Bangalore, 16 November.

Hughes, A. (2011) ‘Innovation Policy: Learning from Global Best Practice’, Presentation at the Global Innovation Roundtable, Delhi, 14 November.

Hughes, A. (2011) ‘Universities R&D and the Growth Agenda’, CIHE-Anglo American Breakfast Meeting, 20 Carlton House Terrace, London, 2 November.

Hughes, A. (2011) ‘University-Industry Links and Impact Analysis’, MRC Economic Impact Workshop, 41 Portland Place, London, 26 October.

Hughes, A. (2011) ‘University-Industry Links and Impacts Analysis’, HEFCE Seminar, Centre Point, 19 October.

Hughes, A. (2011) ‘Understanding the role of universities in the innovation process’, Mexico City Science and Innovation Week (SIW), Palacio de Minería, Mexico City, 17 October.

Hughes, A. (2011) ‘Innovation Policy and the Science Base: Impact and Evaluation’, CONACyT Mexico City, 13 October.

Connell, D. (2011) presentations to a seminar on innovation policy challenges in Glasgow organized by the University of Strathclyde in September.

Hughes, A. (2011) ‘Shaping National Innovation Systems: Cargo Cults and the Evidence Base’, 2011 Gulf Research Meeting: Workshop 7: Shaping the Gulf National Innovation Systems, King’s College, Cambridge, 8 July.

Connell, D, (2011) presentation on ‘Alternatives to Silicon Valley; How R&D Services can Provide a Stepping Stone to Building New Industries’ at British Council UAE Innovation Policy Diologue in Dubai. 27/28 February.

Connell, D. (2011); speech to European Competitiveness Council (Member State Industry Ministers) advocating EC funding of €1 billion to cofund EU SBIR programme. 13 April.

Connell, D (2011) chaired workshop of 10 member state ministers and senior officials on EU financial support programmes for SMEs (ie venture capital, bank loan guarantees etc).

Connell, D. (2011) spoke at high level Institute of Technology and Engineering workshop on procurement based innovation and SBRI, alongside Mark Prisk MP, 23 May.

Mina A., (2011) AoM Annual Conference, San Antonio, Texas, 12-16th August.

Mina A. (2011) ‘Professional Services: Innovation and Practices’ UK-IRC and AIM Workshop, Imperial College London Business School, 10-11 March.

Mina A. (2010) Academy of Management Annual Meeting, Montreal, 6-10 August.

Connell, D. (2010) ‘The University research treasure cave myth and the low hanging fruit’, presentation to UK~IRC workshop on Universities and the Knowledge Economy, in collaboration with the Cambridge Journal of Economics, Cambridge, 28-29 June 2010.

Hughes, A. (2010) ‘Growth, innovation and the science base: from cargo cult to industrial activism’, Plenary Keynote Address 3rd International Innovation and Enterprise Conference Tsinghua University Beijing 8 July 2010.

Hughes, A. (2010) ‘The science and research base: activities, interaction and the public good’, presentation at the BIS Science and Research Seminar: Science, The Economy and Society: An Overview of the Research Base and the Role of Government at BIS, 1 Victoria Street, London, 15 January 2010.

Hughes, A. (2010), ‘Growth, innovation and the science base: from cargo cult to industrial activism’, Joint Economic and Social Research Council and British Academy Event Does innovation produce economic growth?, One Great George Street, London, 16 March 2010.

Hughes, A. (2010), ‘What academics and business want and get from knowledge exchange in the UK’, presentation at the Enabling innovation: creative investments in Arts and Humanities Research policy seminar, The Work Foundation, 5 March.

Hughes, A. (2010) ‘System thinking, market failure and the development of innovation policy: the case of Australia’, International Schumpeter Conference, Aalborg University, 21-24 June 2010.

Hughes, A. (2010) ‘A vision for UK research and innovation policy’ Modelling Futures: understanding Risk and Uncertainty, Mellon Sawyer Seminar Series, CRASSH, Cambridge, 28 May 2010.

Hughes, A. (2010), ‘University-business/community interaction’, Presentation at Round Table Meeting with OECD Secretariat to consider Emerging Themes from the OECD Innovation Strategy, Imperial College London, 16 February.

Hughes, A. and Kitson, M. (2010), ‘Knowledge Exchange in the UK: Motivations, Impacts and Constraints’, DIME Workshop: Universities on a Third Mission: External Engagement and Entrepreneurship by Academic Researchers, Alma Graduate School, University of Bologna – 11-12 February.

Connell, D. (2009) Institute for Manufacturing Annual Technology Management Conference, University of Cambridge, September 2009.

Hughes, A. (2009) ‘Innovation and the “science” base’, Cabinet Office Seminar, 23 September 2009.

Hughes, A. (2009) ‘Innovation policy, university-industry links, open innovation and the new production of knowledge’, paper presented at the Symposium at Noors Slott: Changes of Science and Policy, 16 October 2009.

Hughes, A. and Kitson, M. (2009), Knowledge Exchange Between Academics and the Business, Public and Third Sectors, Presentation to HEFCE at Centre Point in London, 14 December.

Hughes, A. and Salter, A. (2009), ‘Ivory Towers and Bamboo Aeroplanes: The role of University IP in UK (and US) Innovation Systems’, Innovation Summit: The drivers of successful innovation and the appropriation of value, 8 December

Hughes, A. and Salter, A. (2009), ‘The role of British universities in creating wealth in the 21st century’, Innovation Summit: The drivers of successful innovation and the appropriation of value, The Royal Society, London, 8 December. Connell, D (2009) Chaired and gave talk at Cambridge Network event on SBRI (21 July 2009).

Hughes, A. (2009), ‘Universities and the Commercialisaton of Science: Retrospect and Prospect’, DRUID Summer Conference, Copenhagen, 17-19 June.

Connell, D (2009) presented paper at Workshop on Pre-competitive Procurement organised by European Commission 16 June 2009 and made policy proposals.

Hughes, A. (2009) ‘Industrial Innovation and the Role of the Modern Research University’, International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), The Pitt Building, University of Cambridge, 27 April.

Connell, D (2009) talk given to TSB management on soft and hard companies and collaborative R&D cf Contract R&D 5 January 2009.

Connell, D (2008) gave two talks at a high level 2 day policy symposium on ‘Novel Electronic and Photonic Device Technologies: Policies to Maximise the Benefits to UK plc’ 6 and 7 November 2008.

Hughes, A. (2008) Entrepreneurship and Innovation Policy: Retrospect and Prospect, Options for Britain II Conference, CRASSH, Cambridge, 8 July.

Mina, A. (2008) ‘The Emergence of New Knowledge, Market Evolution and the Dynamics of Micro-Innovation Systems’, 25th DRUID Celebration Conference, Copenhagen Business School, 17-20th June, Winner of the Conference Best Paper Award.

Hughes, A. (2008) ‘The Cambridge IKC’ Presentation to the DBER Committee on the Future of the Knowledge Economy, Judge Business School, 29th April.

Hughes, A. (2008), Innovation Policy as a Cargo Cult: Myths and Realities of Productivity Growth in the Knowledge Economy’, Cambridge Society Branch Leicester, Leicester, 12 March.

Hughes, A. (2008), ‘On Universities and Innovation Policy: Some reflections based on US and UK Experience’, Invited Annual Lecture, Fifth Ordinary meeting of the 175th Session, Manchester Statistical Society, 12 February 2008.

Hughes, A. (2008), ‘Reshaping Innovation Policy: Systems of Innovation, Productivity and the Services Sector in Australia’, Forum Reshaping Innovation Policy – an international expert view from Professor Alan Hughes of the University of Cambridge, Department of State and Regional Development, Sydney, 10 April 2008.

Hughes, A. (with A. Cosh) (2008), ‘Science-based Entrepreneurship: University-Industry Links and Barriers to Innovation in the UK and the USA’, PRIME network conference on The Dynamics of science-based Entrepreneurship, Sestri-Levante, 1 April.

Mina, A. (2008) ‘The CBR project for the CIKC Commercialisation Laboratory’, OECD delegation’s visit to the Centre for Business Research, Cambridge, 6th February.

Connell, D. (2007) ‘Accelerating the Exploitation of New Technologies’, JBS/CBR CIKC workshop, Cambridge, 12th December.

Mina, A. (2007) ‘University-Industry Interfaces: Behaviours, Strategies and Policies’, JBS/CBR CIKC workshop, Cambridge, 12th December.

Hughes, A. (2007) ‘The IKC Commercialisation Laboratory’ Presentation to the EPSRC Panel site visit, CAPE, Cambridge, 23rd November.

Mina, A. (2007) ‘The Emergence and Evolution of New Markets and the Dynamics of Micro-Innovation Systems’, Technology, Innovation and Change in Health and Healthcare Symposium, Brocher Foundation, Geneva, 18-19th October.

Hughes, A. (2007), ‘Innovation Policy and University-Industry Links: Some reflections based on US and UK experience, China Executive Leadership Programme, Cambridge, 18 July.

Hughes, A. (2006), ‘Research, Industry Innovation Support, Defence Procurement and US Industry Development’, ANU Senior Policy Forum, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia, 18 December.

Hughes, A. (2006), ‘University industry links, industry dynamics, public procurement and economic performance’, Interdepartmental Staff Seminar, Department of Industry Tourism and Resources, Canberra, Australia, 18 December.

Hughes, A. (2006), ‘Public and Private Partnerships for Innovation: The Complexity of University, Government and Industry Links in UK and the USA’, Innovation Policy Conference: Meeting the challenges – Developing an Innovation Action Agenda, Melbourne, Australia, 6 December.

Hughes, A. (2006), ‘Shortcomings in the US model and innovation in unexpected places’, The Sydney Business Roundtable, The Fairfax Building, Sydney, Australia, 21 November.

Hughes, A. (2006), ‘Innovation, Services and Innovation Policy’, Australia Business Foundation, Chairman’s seminar, Sydney, Australia, 21 November.

Hughes, A. (2006), ‘Innovation Benchmarking and University Industry Links in the UK and the USA’ Staff Seminar, University of Auckland Business School, Auckland, New Zealand, 17 November.

Hughes, A. (2006), ‘Optimal Innovation Systems: Lessons form the UK and the USA’ Innovation Leadership Summit, Brisbane, Australia, 26 October.

Hughes, A. (2006), ‘Innovation Policy: Lessons from the UK and the US’ Premier’s Ideas Seminar, Department of the Premier and Cabinet , Brisbane, Australia, 23 October.

Hughes, A. (2006), ‘Management Characteristics, Managerial Ownership and Innovative Efficiency in High Technology Industry’, EIB Workshop, University of Queensland Business School, 6 October.

Workshops organised

Connell, D (2008) organised a high level 2 day policy symposium on ‘Novel Electronic and Photonic Device Technologies: Policies to Maximise the Benefits to UK plc’ 6 and 7 November 2008, with participation by senior officials from DIUS, TSB, EPSRC,MOD, Royal Society, IMEC (Belgium), Fraunhofer Microelectronic Institute (Germany) and UK technology companies.

Hughes, A. organised workshop entitled Measuring the Impact and Success of University Industry Knowledge Exchange: A metrics workshop, 27 July 2007, Robinson College, Cambridge.

Mina, A. (2007) JBS/CBR CIKC workshop, Cambridge, 12th December (jointly organised with Arnoud De Meyer).

Media coverage

Mina, A. (2010) cited in Research Quarterly, April 2010.


Mina, A. (2010) attended 1 day course for data access and use, UK Office of National Statistics (ONS), London, 26 March 2010.

Project leaders

Alan Hughes
David Connell

Other principal investigator

Andrea Mina

Collaborating Cambridge faculties

Cambridge Judge Business School

Department of Engineering (CAPE and the Institute for Manufacturing)

Department of Physics (Cavendish Laboratory)

Project dates